A green energy first that has received significant support from Democrat President Joe Biden’s administration has deep ties to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
Gotion Inc., a California-based energy company, was greenlit for a Michigan electric vehicle battery plant project by the Biden administration.
However, national security experts and Republicans are now raising the alarm after discovering the company’s extensive links to China’s communist dictatorship.
The project has received the full support of Biden’s Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States and Michigan’s Democrat Governor Gretchen Whitmer.
However, the project has come under heightened scrutiny over concerns that Gotion is likely a CCP influence operation.
The firm’s parent company and controlling owner is Gotion High-Tech Power Energy, which is headquartered in Hefei City, China, a Foreign Agents Registration Act filing shows.
President Donald Trump’s former National Security Council official Erin Walsh is raising serious concerns about the partnership.
“National Security is a shared burden,” warns Walsh, who also served in the Commerce and State Departments.
“The dichotomy between interests of the Biden administration and Governor Whitmer versus the protection of the state and our national security is stark.
“Their unbridled ambition for a green energy transition is not at all grounded in U.S. energy security.”
Biden and Whitmer’s embrace of Gotion Inc. comes as the GOP grows increasingly frustrated with how Democrats have prioritized China-linked green energy initiatives over fossil fuels.
Democrats insist they are backing Chinese firms to advance the green agenda in order to purportedly fight “climate change.”
Meanwhile, Gotion has sought to alleviate any criticism of its U.S. operations.
Gotion’s North American manufacturing vice president Chuck Thelen recently told Politico that Americans’ concerns about communism are not “based in reality.”
“Rumors that you’ve heard about us bringing communism to North America are just flat-out fear-mongering and really have nothing based in reality,” Thelan claims.
But Gotion High-Tech’s 2022 Chinese-language ESG report shows it formed a CCP branch in 2010 and, in 2014, a CCP committee, the Daily Caller reported.
That same Gotion High-Tech document also described how the Hefei-based firm employs 923 CCP members, including Gotion High-Tech CEO Li Zhen, who is said to be party secretary for the company’s committee, according to the outlet.
Meanwhile, Gotion High-Tech’s “Articles of Association” declare: “The Company shall set up a Party organization and carry out Party activities in accordance with the Constitution of the Communist Party of China.
“The Company shall ensure necessary conditions for carrying out Party activities.
“The secretary of the Party committee shall be the chairman.”
Walsh, now senior research fellow for international studies at the Heritage Foundation’s Asia Studies Center, warns that Democrats are failing to put the American people first.
Whitmer has “chosen the interests of the CCP and not the people of Michigan,” according to Walsh.
One of the proposed Gotion battery plants in Michigan will reportedly be located within 100 miles of Camp Grayling, the largest National Guard training facility in the United States, and 60 miles from military armories.
At the camp, Michigan’s National Guard on an annual basis notably trains a portion of the military in Taiwan, the Wall Street Journal reported.
It’s not merely the fact that Gotion’s U.S. outfit has ties to China that is resulting in scrutiny over its EV initiative, which Whitmer dubbed “the biggest ever economic development project in Northern Michigan.”
The state’s Appropriations Committee voted 10 to 9 in April to authorize the company to receive $175 million in taxpayer dollars.
The decision came after a public hearing that saw locals taking aim at Democrats for, in the words of Big Rapids resident Marjorie Steele, casting aside “community’s pleas to table this vote until some small semblance of due diligence can be performed.”
Aside from having hundreds of CCP employees, China’s Gotion High-Tech took its staff on field trips in July and August 2021 to memorials for communist revolutionaries in the country’s Anhui province, according to footage on the company’s website unearthed by the Daily Caller.
Employees on the first day of the July trip donned matching Red Army uniforms, while on the next day visited a hall and pledged the CCP’s oath, footage shows.
For Michael Sobolik, senior Indo-Pacific studies fellow at the American Foreign Policy Council think tank, Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act has made the U.S. dependent on China.
The $740 billion tax, climate, and healthcare spending package was signed into law by the president in 2022 and paved the way for Gotion to qualify for millions of dollars in tax credits.
“In reality, Chinese companies have exploited the IRA and are setting up shop inside America with taxpayer subsidies,” Sobolik told the Washington Examiner.
“It’s dangerous,” he continued.
“America should be reducing our exposure to CCP companies and insulating our supply chains, not making them more exposed to the predations of our primary adversary.”
Republicans in Congress have sought to stop the IRA from boosting foreign entities since it passed.
In March, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) put forth legislation, which has not been voted on, that would restrict subsidies under the law to Chinese battery companies.
Rubio noted upon introducing the measure that an estimated 76% of the world’s electric battery production comes from CCP-controlled or backed manufacturers.
This week, Whitmer called for a “100% clean energy standard,” to allegedly “protect our air and water for future generations while creating jobs, lowering costs, and enhancing reliability, we need to expand domestic energy production.”
Part of the governor’s wishlist included a sweeping mandate for energy in the state to be produced from green sources, including solar and wind.
“There’s a lot of great American companies that would have loved the opportunity, the money, and would have brought jobs to our country while supporting our way of life,” Matthew Seely, head of the Michigan Conservative Coalition, said in a statement.
“Now, we’ve got a company directly tied to the CCP coming into our state.”